Vanessa Lowndes

After studying an Undergraduate Degree and Post Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management at UCT, I started my career in Learning and Development in 1997. My journey in the field has taken me down many interesting paths, and subsequently my experience spans a number of specialised areas. I have worked in the trenches, I have managed large teams, I have consulted to projects… and now (15 years later), I am building a business.

My real love is facilitation and I rise to the challenge of creating worthwhile learning experiences for every learner that I encounter, be they senior execs of an organisation, or folk that are young and fresh and just starting out.

I have also become familiar with best practise methods for the design of learning material and spend hours pondering how to create material that is easily accessible, well structured, outcomes orientated and intention driven. This is often no easy task, as can quite easily mean getting under the skin of an organisation in order to dovetail seamlessly with internal protocols.

The projects I have been involved in have spanned many industries - Financial, Insurance, IT, Motor, Manufacturing, Media, Retail, FMCG, Healthcare to name but a few.

Without a doubt, my career defining project was to train 30 000 people in 20 days, for Ngikwazi FieldMarketing in 2006. 100 trainers were positioned throughout the country to deliver training in what were often deemed very difficult circumstances. What seemed to be an unfathomable task was evidently doable. This was project management at its best… and a truly South African adventure.

In 2010, I headed up a committee that set up The Cape Town Learning and Development Community of Practise. It has been a great success and is growing rapidly.

I live in Hout Bay, grow veggies in my back yard, and enjoy long walks on the beach with my clan. In a nutshell, I seem to have created exactly the life that I want.

Annie Hanekom

With my UCT Undergraduate Degree and Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing Management behind me, I packed my backpack and headed for the bright lights of London. After packing boxes at The Wedding List Company, learning the ropes as a PA, wandering off on European travel adventures, getting stuck in the Investment Banking world, I then stumbled into the world of IT systems training Essbase, SAP and PeopleSoft.

After some time tripping around the globe, doing a ski season on the slopes in Colorado, and working as a chef on a super-yacht in the South of France (be under no illusion how hard I worked!), I lucked out on returning in 2003 to a sparkling new career opportunity in the world of Learning and Development.

I started out as a Programme Manager, learning the A-Z of running learning experiences. I then moved into the facilitation space. And shortly after that, I stretched into, the field of learning design. Good fortune nudged me to into the space of business development and being the extraverted people person that I am, the world of sales just drew me in. So, while I do play in all aspects of L&D, the areas of training needs analysis, solution building, account management and client care are where I spend most of my time lucky me!

After years of working with clients such as Microsoft, GSK, LOreal, Cooperative Bank, Fujitsu Services etc, and having stepped into the Coaching arena, I returned to do this work back home in Cape Town and still keep pinching myself to be doing such meaningful work in a place that is so close to my heart.

Being back on home soil, I grabbed the opportunity with some friends to set up an NGO, Lucca Leadership SA, focused on bringing leadership skills (based on Servant Leadership principles) to youth with the focus of empowering and leveraging the work of community based projects.

Being a runner and triathlete, my soul just sings at the opportunity of living in Hout Bay surrounded by such beauty and ruggedness on my doorstep shared with my little family.

The opportunity of now building this business together with Vanessa is the realization of a lifelong dream.